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August 14, 2012 > VTA to receive more federal funding

VTA to receive more federal funding

Submitted By Brandi Childress

The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) has been awarded a $1.6M federal grant to help advance environmental and design work to extend the State Route (SR) 237 Express Lanes an additional four miles from their current end points to west of Mathilda Avenue in Sunnyvale. In March 2012, carpool lane connector ramps at the SR 237/I-880 interchange in Milpitas were converted into express lanes which provide solo commuters an option to use the carpool lanes for a fee. This fee changes dynamically in response to existing congestion levels and available capacity in the carpool lanes.

Solo drivers are shortening their journeys between 12 minutes and 20 minutes, and use by both solo drivers and carpoolers has steadily increased month by month. Toll rates are dynamically priced and vary by the level of congestion in the express lanes. The average toll rate was $1.55 with the toll rate varying between $0.30 and $5.00.

"Investing in our region's transportation system is a highly effective way to boost the economy, today and in the future, and to enhance the quality of life of our communities," said Congressman Mike Honda (D-Campbell). One of 12 different federal grant programs, the Value Pricing Pilot Program (VPPP) supports strategies to manage congestion on highways, including tolling highway facilities through congestion pricing.

VTA is actively developing project studies and environmental documentation for the proposed conversion of carpool lanes to express lanes along SR 85 and U.S. 101 by 2015 and 2016 respectively.

For more information on VTA's SVEL Program, contact VTA Community Outreach at (408) 321-7575 or visit www.vta.org/expresslanes.

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